In our part of the world, the genus Ficus has gotten a rather mixed reputation, primarily because some of its species have aggressive root systems than can raise sidewalks, crack foundations and clog underground pipes. Fortunately, not all of the 800 or so Ficus species pose such risks. One that is especially useful in the landscape of southern Florida is Ficus microcarpa ‘Green Island’, a very attractive shrub that grows slowly and benignly here. It is known for its friendly roots. Its glossy green leaves have lots of ornamental appeal, and it neither requires frequent watering nor is particular about soil type. Left alone, it will reach 8 ft. in height, but with periodic shearing it can be maintained as a nice ground cover. Green Island Ficus is even capable of being grown as a house plant or as a Bonsai specimen.
Green Island Ficus has been a hit since its introduction to our area. In 2001 it was chosen Plant of the Year by the FNGLA (Florida Nursery, Growers and Landscape Association). Its toughness is perhaps best illustrated by the fact that it can be incorporated successfully into roadway medians, where many other species succumb to vehicular exhausts.
Please drop by the nursery and evaluate the Green Island Ficus first-hand. We have them in 3-, 7-, and 15-gallon containers.